There were so many really great things about “Big Brother 17,” but to us one of the biggest things was that we had a really competitive final three this time around. While Liz Nolan felt like she was third in the power rankings, she still had a couple of guaranteed votes and some challenge wins to back her up. Had two people changed their minds last night and picked her over Steve, she would be the winner of this season this morning!
Earlier today, we had a chance to speak with her via phone about the season as a whole. One thing that we did find very fascinating about the Liz interview is that despite having sort of the Austin hype around her and everything in the house, she was extremely self-aware and had a few interesting points about what it is like coming out of the game and realizing that the love for you may not be what you think.
CarterMatt – When you get back to Miami, are you going to want to watch the episodes right away, or go off and try to do some normal things?
Liz Nolan – Top priority is definitely getting a manicure and a pedicure, but then after that try to do normal things. Probably some vacation time, because the house will do it to you. I’m ready to head back home.
As someone who wasn’t as familiar with the show going in, what has the past 12 or so hours been like for you? Has it been overwhelming at all?
Oh my god, yes! It’s happening all so fast; I can’t even catch my breath, hearing all the different reactions on things, hearing how people felt about different circumstances. It’s really interesting to hear, but I had so much fun in the ‘Big Brother’ house and I have no regrets. Just choices.
What have you been the most surprised by through all of this, other than of course Vanessa having a ton of money?
That was so interesting! She just told me and Steve that she just sold her Bentley before coming to do this, so thanks Steve for taking me because I really needed the money. Other than that, the biggest shockers for me in the house were Vanessa blindsiding Austin, that was huge, and then Steve taking me to the finals. He definitely made it seem like he did not want to take me because I had two secure votes in jury, and we knew that Vanessa didn’t have a great track record with people in jury. So I thought he was for sure going to take her over me, so it was a complete shocker. I had no idea and I’m really happy he took me. They both make final two deals with each other and I didn’t even think it was an option for me.
Do you think it was a deliberate move on his part to not tell you, so that kind of last minute, you wouldn’t have the time to prepare a speech or be in that position?
(Laughs) I called him Sneaky Steve for a reason. That was so sneaky of him! Great game move, because he really did what he said he wanted to do, and that was catch me off guard. He caught me completely off guard! I thought he was for sure going to take Vanessa, so I didn’t have a full speech planned. I had some things that I wanted to get across, but it was a great game move on his part … He really proved his worth 100%.
I’m going to talk a little bit about the start of the game, but forgive me if some of this was Julia because at that time it was hard to differentiate. Who was the one that was closest to Jace?
Yes! You guys watched the feeds so you know that Jace and I had a little flirtmance. But I’d say that Julia and Jace were more flirty; they kind of connected on different levels. They both love the same music and they’re both a little flirty. But I was a big Jace fan. He was really interesting because he had no idea about the twins at all, so I don’t think even he knew which one he was crushing on more.
You’re going to want to watch him when he finds out about the Twin Twist after his eviction…
I can’t wait! That is the one thing I’m excited to see is his reaction. Everyone after Jace kind of had an inclination, but oh my God! I can’t wait to see his face; it’s going to be everything.
So who do you blame the most for the Twin Twist coming out? Was it someone like Da’Vonne, who really got some of the conversation out there?
100% Da’Vonne and her little accomplice Jason! I found out that they were very much behind getting out the Twin Twist. I don’t really think that they handled it to their best advantage, because they could have tried to keep the secret and work with us. Instead, they tried to make fun of it, and spread it like wildfire through the house and made a joke of it. I think at the end when the right people did find out, they didn’t handle it correctly.
Look, we lasted a lot longer than they did … It is what it is.
When it comes to Jeff, I think at a certain point Austin wanted no part of Jeff being in the house anymore. Did you get a sense of that?
Yes, Jeff and I kind of had a little bit of a flirtmance. I flirt a lot! That’s one thing I learned about myself through ‘Big Brother’; I like to flirt. But Jeff, I guess Austin felt really threatened by him. Jeff, how do I put this, he talked a lot in the house, and he got in trouble with how much he talked behind people’s backs. For a lot of reasons Austin wanted Jeff out of the house, but he was flirting with his girl! Jeff was fun while it lasted. (Laughs.)
Is it strange for you to come out of this house and have people who know everything about a relationship with someone like Austin, who have watched you two since the start of the season?
Yes. I first of all had no idea the reaction was going to be like this. I thought it was going to be more positive, but now that I find out that it’s the latter, it’s really hard to hear the public’s reaction … I was living in the moment, I absolutely adored the kid, I thought he was respectful to me, and it’s hard to hear negative connotations about him. I hope that we can make it work still; I don’t want to let all the negativity get in the way of that because it’s hard. I’m going to try to block all that out. Liztin is definitely here to stay for at least a little while.
I know you’ve said you would want to go back. Would you want the Twin Twist again, or would you just want to be Liz?
I would love to go back, but probably not with Austin. I want to try to do it on my own, and I heard that he took a lot of credit for stuff I did, so I would want to go back alone, but have Julia there. Julia and I there would have a very different dynamic and we would kick more butt. I would have to teach her my ways in the competitions so she would suck less (laughs), but we’re really close and we would love to do anything together. ‘Amazing Race,’ bring it on! We’re ready.
Austin really wanted you to win, so he was off saying things in the jury like ‘I’m going to make sure Vanessa is going to lose the game.’ Do you think those sort of things hurt you, since nobody wants to be told how to vote?
I wasn’t in the jury house so I don’t know how hard he was campaigning for me, but I’m sure he let his heart get involved 100%. I think that either way, the jury voted how they wanted to vote. I didn’t win, so there you go; but he was a good talker! He could persuade anyone and anything; he learned that about himself. It can’t always be your way, Austin!
Finally, how aware were you this season of everything that Vanessa was doing?
Like Zingbot said, she played a really masterful game! I was not that aware, I am telling you. I had my suspicions about her, and I knew that there was something about her and me and Austin almost had her figured out. I didn’t like to listen to her a lot; she tried to always have her way with things. We got very suspicious of her, almost put her up on the block but we didn’t.
I think with Vanessa, she helped me more in the game than she hurt me. So I don’t really have anything bad to say about Vanessa; I’m sad that she’s getting a lot of negative reaction to, but I liked her! I was a fan.
If you just missed it, we just posted our interview with the winner Steve here. Check it out! Also, you can sign up here in the event you want some other TV news sent right to you via our CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: CBS.)